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Old 12-27-2005, 09:29 AM   #1
Dave McWilliams
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Default Does anyone play the pipes with Asthma?

I recently had two bouts with Viral Bronchitis. My doctor thinks I may have developed Asthma. Is ther anyone who plays the pipes with Asthma?
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Old 12-27-2005, 09:50 AM   #2
Richard Strayer
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Default Re: Does anyone play the pipes with Asthma?

Aye. As with any aerobic activity, it shouldn't be a problem so long as you control it properly. In addition to piping, I used to be an endurance athelete (distance cycling - gave it up because of time, not asthma).

If your condition warrants it, you might ask your physician if s/he thinks you would benefit from a preventative medication, such as Singulair or Severent; otherwise, you should at least have an albuterol rescue inhaler (Proventil or Ventolin, etc.) Just don't rely on over-the-counter remedies; if you have been diagnosed with asthma you should be sure to treat it properly.
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Old 12-27-2005, 09:57 AM   #3
Ian Lawther
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Default Re: Does anyone play the pipes with Asthma?

I recall a fellow teenager when I was learning who was encouraged in his learning of the pipes by his doctor because the aerobic exercise involved would help his asthma.

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Old 12-27-2005, 11:08 AM   #4
Alex Anderson
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Default Re: Does anyone play the pipes with Asthma?

I have athsma but most of the things that trigger an attack are indoors, such as house dust, dander, mites and molds, so I am usually OK while playing and/or competing.

Just keep the Albuterol handy.

Who knows, in the future I may be playing bellows pipes only.

Try not. Do. Or do not. There is no try.
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Old 12-27-2005, 01:06 PM   #5
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Default Re: Does anyone play the pipes with Asthma?

Add me to the list. Just to reiterate, prevention is the key. Singulair twice a day, and albuterol in the pocket or sporran.
Sometimes in life, you have to more than just watch.
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Old 12-27-2005, 03:39 PM   #6
the Jamesinator
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Default Re: Does anyone play the pipes with Asthma?

I used to have athsma. I took my puffers for about 2 years before it finally went away. It didn't affect my piping a whole lot, it just affected me when i went running or bicycling for long distances
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Old 12-27-2005, 04:47 PM   #7
New Hudson Highlander
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Default Re: Does anyone play the pipes with Asthma?

Yep. Mine seemed to develop the same way.

A puff of albuterol usually helps me before playing. Everyone is individual, though; work with your Dr. to see what works best for you. If he or she doesn't "do" asthma on a regual basis, ask for a referral to an allergist who does.

I've heard both sides on the asthma/piping issue; that piping helps and that piping, as with other aerobic activities, can trigger episodes.

Every asthematic is different. The key is to KEEP it under control, which may or may not be easy...and means taking the appropriate meds even when you feel OK. As was mentioned, some meds are for acute "attacks" and some for maintenance, and sometimes they overlap.

"It only has 9 notes...how hard can it be to play?"
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Old 12-27-2005, 07:17 PM   #8
Bill M
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Default Re: Does anyone play the pipes with Asthma?

Another asthma piper here.
Also keep the inhaler in my sporran.
No real problem.
All the best!
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Old 12-27-2005, 08:00 PM   #9
Drum Sgt & Piper
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Default Re: Does anyone play the pipes with Asthma?

I've had Asthma from birth and used to go to Great Ormond Street Hospital for breathing exercises from the age of 4 until I started playing the Bugle at 5 years old.
They said I don't need to go back for anymore breathing exercises because of playing the bugle.

I played the bugle at band each week till I was 18 then joined a pipe band, but because I was not playing the bugle as much the Asthma started to came back.

There are triggers house dust, mites, moulds, animal fur, cigarette smoke, hair spray, perfume, pollen, chemicals, worrying plus more.

My Asthma will not go away this time as Iím allergic to most animal fur and I have 10 cats 2 dogs a rabbit and a ferret. This has not put me in hospital yet.

Be aware of chemical too like those used in fog machines I was at a function and they used one of those machines cut it short I was in Hospital the next day for a week because of it.
I was going to use one of these machines for a job Iíll be doing next year but I canít.

Playing the pipes has strengthened my lungs.
Just before Christmas I bought a new Bannatyne Hide Bag, I played a medium Bannatyne bag before but was getting too much pain in my left hand and was told the bag was too big.
My Pipe Major leant me a small Bannatyne Hide Bag and stocks to try out, it was brill no pain but only one problem, they were amazed that I could blow the bag up in one breath so I got the Extended Small.

For me playing the pipes has helped, I keep an inhaler in my sporran I have one in my pipe box there every where Iím sure there breeding

You just need to manage it properly.
Take care
[ ]
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Old 12-28-2005, 03:47 AM   #10
Robin Beck
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Default Re: Does anyone play the pipes with Asthma?

Aye, this one has been raised before, and the simple answer is nothing can be better for your chest than blowing pipes, I have asthma and find that is not as bad when I blow regulary. Also every Doctor I've known has advicated this. Especialy the respiritory experts. Just dont expect too much of yourself, and set your pipes to suit.
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